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Pediatrics. 2012 Mar;129(3):433-45. doi: 10.1542/peds.2011-0026. Epub 2012 Feb 13.

Quality measures for primary care of complex pediatric patients.

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Department of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA 90027, USA.



A well-recognized gap exists in assessing and improving the quality of care for medically complex patients. Our objective was to examine evidence for primary care based on the patient-centered medical home model and to identify valid and meaningful quality measures for use in complex pediatric patients.


We conducted literature searches on Medline and the National Quality Measures Clearinghouse for existing measures, as well as evidence to inform the development of new quality measures. We used a 3-step process to select relevant sources from published literature: (1) the titles were screened by 2 independent reviewers; (2) the abstracts were reviewed for quality-of-care contents or constructs; and (3) full-text articles were obtained and reviewed for measure specification. All materials were reviewed for the Oxford Centre For Evidence-Based Medicine level of evidence and for relevance to primary care of complex pediatric patients. A national expert panel was convened to evaluate and rate the measures by using the Rand/University of California Los Angeles Appropriateness Method.


We presented 74 quality measures to the expert panel for review and discussion. The panel rated and accepted 35 measures as valid and feasible for assessing primary care quality in complex pediatric patients. The final set of quality measures was grouped in the following domains: primary care-general (14), patient/family-centered care (8), chronic care (2), coordination of care (9), and transition of care (2).


By using the patient-centered medical home framework of accessible, continuous, family-centered, coordinated, and culturally effective care, a national expert panel selected 35 primary care quality measures for complex pediatric patients.

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